When Google Hangouts were launched (back during the first day of Google I/O), they brought together a few elements of Google’s many separate chatting services. But though it was awesome, it was missing a few key things, namely SMS and Google Voice integration. These drawbacks made the service little more than a simple instant messaging app, when it could have been so much more. However, to make us feel a little better, the Google+ community manager of Hangouts stated that SMS support was coming soon. But what about those that don’t use SMS? Google Voice is a viable alternative for many, what will happen to them?
According to Nikhyl Singhal’s post on Google+, Hangouts will get integration with Google Voice soon, along with support for outbound calls. Currently, you can get inbound calls with Google Hangouts, but you have to use Google Talk to make an outbound call. Full calling will come to both the web Hangouts and the Chrome extension.
The most interesting part of this entire post is the phrase, “Hangouts is designed to be the future of Google Voice.” This is very encouraging, as some of us did not know whether Google Voice had a future at all. Aside from an app update to the Holo interface, the project has been a bit barren. It’s amazing to know that it will be integrated into something as big as Hangouts. Hopefully we’ll see the results of all this soon!